Posted in Health, mental-health, Personal

Hiking. It’s Good for You

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a busy week of writing and work. The kids are back to doing school virtually, so we’ve overcome that hurdle of change.

I had a request from one of my followers to show some of the photos of my hikes, so I thought today, I’d share some of the benefits of hiking and share some of the awesome photos I’ve taken. Not that I’m a great photographer or anything like that, it’s just our world is amazingly beautiful, so not even I can take a bad picture. 😊

So, without further ado here’s my personal list of the benefits of hiking.

  1. It clears my mind. Whenever, I have a tough decision to make or I’m having trouble with my manuscript. I get out into nature and my mind clears and problems get solved.
  • Hiking is a great stress reliever. Whenever, I’m having a hectic day, I take a quick walk through the woods and it calms me and clears my mind.
  • Hiking is also great exercise. It burns calories and strengthens your muscles including your back muscles. It’s also a great way to improve your circulation.
  • It’s a great way to focus on gratitude. When you’re out in the woods and taking in all the beauty, it’s hard to be in a negative frame of mind. It’s a great place to reset and change your attitude.

So, there you have it. Five great reasons to get out into the woods and get moving. It’s good for you both mentally and physically! Here is a photo of the beauty that’s waiting for you out there! 😊

Posted in Health, Personal

Getting back into the Swing of Things

 

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a long week of work. I’m itching to get back to writing. I haven’t written anything except blog posts since I’ve been sick. I’m finding out Bronchitis takes a long time to get over, but the worst of it is over. Thank God.

Photo on Visualhunt.com

Spring is finally here, it was supposed to snow last night, and I believe it did, but it didn’t stick. I’m happy about that. Because I’ve been sick, I haven’t been exercising for about a month. I can tell the difference and I’m anxious to get moving again and get writing again.

I’m going to start my exercise routine by walking first, just to see how my body reacts. I don’t want to do too much too soon and get sick again. I’m going to hike in the woods and get some of those healing phytoncides from the trees.

Photo on Visual Hunt

Trees are amazing. Did you know it has been proven that they communicate through their root system, much like the communication between the synapses of our nerve cells. Isn’t that amazing?

The older trees help and communicate with the younger ones so that they all flourish. Kind of like the female elephants who stick together and help raise the babies. It’s just another piece of evidence that shows we’re all connected. For more information about tree communication, check out this article. http://www.ecology.com/2012/10/08/trees-communicate/

So, if you’re looking to start a new exercise routine, add hiking in the woods as part of it. It’s good for you, both body and soul. Getting back to nature is one of my goals this summer. I always feel better when I’m in the forest or at the beach. Both places are good for you.  The fresh air is good for you. Don’t be a victim of the indoor generation. Get outside and get healthy!!

 

Photo on Visualhunt.com

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. What are some of the things you do to stay healthy? Leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Health

Are We the Indoor Generation?

 

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. It has been a dicey couple of weeks what with ice storms and power outages and there seems to be more on the way. Sigh. I’m done with winter, how about you? While I was snuggling under my blanket during one of these storms, I saw a short video on Facebook, and I was introduced to a term I hadn’t heard before describing our generation. That term was the “indoor generation.” Are we the indoor generation?

 

According to statistics, we spend ninety percent of our time indoors. We exercise indoors, work indoors, and socialize indoors. When we don’t let fresh air into our homes, that indoor air becomes more polluted than the air outside. This isn’t good for our families and the lack of sunlight can affect our children’s learning.

Photo on VisualHunt.com

Living in a damp and moldy home increases the chance of asthma by forty percent. That is a scary statistic. We need to let fresh air into our homes by opening our doors and windows and not rely on air conditioning so much. I know during the winter this is hard to do because it’s so darn cold, but the more fresh air we have the better off our families will be.

Photo credit: Michael Gabelmann on VisualHunt.com / CC BY-NC

 

So, we’ve drawn the conclusion that living solely indoors isn’t good for us physically, but what about mentally?

Depression is on the rise, especially in the teen demographic. Could it be possible that spending time outside in the fresh air and sunlight would help people struggling with depression? I’m drawing the conclusion the answer is yes.

Why do I draw this conclusion? Because it’s been scientifically proven that walking in nature is good for us. It relieves stress and boosts our immune system. Plus, everyone knows we get vitamin D from the sun, right?

There’s this new term called Forest Bathing and when we walk through the forest we inhale phytoncides. The trees in the forest release these compounds into the air they boost our immune system and help us fight cancer. I’m all for that! For more information on Forest bathing, check out this link.  https://lisaorchard.wordpress.com/2017/08/05/the-benefits-of-forest-bathing/

Photo on VisualHunt

Also, being near the beach is good for us, too. It reduces stress levels and blood pressure, and of course being out in the sun allows you to get that vitamin D we need, and it increases the level of serotonin in our brains, which helps with depression. So, you can’t go wrong spending time in nature. We have to slow down and take care of ourselves. That means taking the time to hike through the woods and head to the beach.

Photo on Visualhunt

Let’s not be the indoor generation anymore. Let’s be the generation that turned our health around and taught our kids the importance of getting out into the fresh air, nature, and sunlight. Our planet has everything we need. If we take care of it, our planet will take care of us.

Thanks for reading my post today. How do you feel about being the indoor generation? Leave a comment, I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Health

The Benefits of Forest-Bathing

 

Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a busy week. We went on a quick vacation to Tahquamenon Falls and had a good time. We hiked along the river and got some great pictures. I love getting out into nature, it’s so calming and good for you, too! Experts are calling it Forest bathing.

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I mentioned it last week in a post and I thought I’d dig a little deeper. Forest bathing originated in Japan where it is called Shinrin-Yoku. Why is walking through a forest beneficial for us?

That is a very good question. The reason traipsing through the woods is good for us is because we inhale phytoncides when we breathe in the forest. These are antimicrobial volatile compounds derived from trees.

 

Photo via Visual Hunt

These phytoncides are released by the trees and plants as a defense mechanism against fungus, bacteria, and even animals. These compounds are good for humans as well. According to one study, they enhanced the destructive mechanism in our cells that kill the cell when its time has run out. It also enhanced the anti-cancer proteins production.  Now that is good news.

To put this in layman’s terms, breathing in phytoncides enhances our own natural defenses.  I think this is incredible. It supports the theory that we’re all connected, with each other, and with nature. Wouldn’t you agree?

Not only is forest bathing physically healthy it’s also psychologically good for us, too. It has been found to be advantageous to people who are dealing with chronic stress. I can attest to the stress-relieving benefits of walking through nature, but now I have scientific proof. Yay Me! For more info about this, check out this post from Huffington Post.

Huffington Post

It’s important in our hustle and bustle world that we teach our kids how to take care of themselves, and one of the things we need to teach them is how to decompress. Not only is forest bathing a great way to relieve stress, it’s a great way to reconnect with your family. It’s important to reconnect with our loved ones. It’s vital to everyone’s psychological health.

 

Photo via VisualHunt.com

So get out into the forest and get moving! It’s good for your body and your soul. Thanks for stopping by, I’d love to hear your thoughts on forest bathing so leave a comment. Or maybe you have other stress relieving habits you’d like to share? I’d love to hear from you!